This toolkit helps parents and families take part in literacy experiences at home to develop children’s reading and language skills.

You will learn:

  • Strategies, tips, and activities to help your child develop as a reader from preschool through adolescence.
  • How to listen, look, help, and encourage while you and your child participate in activities together.

This toolkit includes:

  • An Online Tutorial
  • Supporting Materials
  • Related Resources
  • A Facilitator's Guide

Online Tutorial

In this tutorial, you will learn evidence-based strategies, tips, and activities to help your child develop as a reader from preschool through adolescence, all in an online experience. You can select the age group of your child and use the table of contents in the age group to learn about specific topics.

Approximate tutorial length per age group: 30 minutes.

Supporting Materials

Download and print these infographics with ideas linked to the tutorial to help your child develop as a reader.

Supporting Your Child’s Literacy Development at Home

Taking part in literacy experiences at home can develop your child’s reading ability, comprehension, and language skills.  Activities that you can engage in at home include: joint reading, drawing, singing, storytelling, reciting, game playing, and rhyming.  You can tailor activities to your chil

Audience: 
Parents & Families
Topic: 
Beginning Reading, Comprehension
Route to Reading: Tune-up in the Community

Help your child practice speech sounds and letters during everyday life.

Audience: 
Parents & Families
Topic: 
Beginning Reading

Help your child practice language skills and understand ideas during everyday life.

Audience: 
Parents & Families
Topic: 
Beginning Reading

Help your child practice early literacy skills and understand ideas during everyday life.

Audience: 
Parents & Families
Topic: 
Beginning Reading

Four tips to use when reading with your child.

Audience: 
Parents & Families
Topic: 
Beginning Reading

Helping your child with speech sounds supports early reading success.

Audience: 
Parents & Families
Topic: 
Beginning Reading

Helping your child stretch apart and connect sounds to sound out words supports early reading success.

Audience: 
Parents & Families
Topic: 
Beginning Reading

Asking questions can help your child understand what she reads.

Audience: 
Parents & Families
Topic: 
Beginning Reading

Resources for Younger Children

Parents and caregivers play an important role in supporting children’s literacy development, especially when children are having difficulty. Explore these ideas and resources from the tutorial to learn how.

Big Ideas

  • Talking with your child helps your child to learn about letters and letter sounds, learn new words and ideas, practice hearing and saying words, and practice talking back and forth.
  • Helping your child with speech sounds and letters helps your child hear how language works, learn that letters relate to spoken sounds, link letters to their sounds, and read words later.
  • Talking about books with your child helps your child see that pictures stand for real things, learn that print tells a story, find new ways to say things, and learn new words.
  • Reading with your child helps your child learn new sounds, words, and ideas, link letters to their sounds, and learn how books work.
  • Asking questions when talking about or reading books helps your child think in new ways, consider new words and ideas, explain her thinking; and make sense of letters, sounds, and words.

Visit these Resources to Learn More

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Read a tip sheet that describes effective practices for engaging children in conversations.

Topic: Language Development

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Read a tip sheet that describes effective practices for asking questions.

Topic: Language Development

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Read a tip sheet that describes effective practices for expanding on conversations.

Topic: Language Development

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Read a tip sheet that describes effective practices for having conversations with novel words.

Topic: Language Development

Idaho Commission for Libraries

This sheet by the Idaho Commission for Libraries includes a rhyming game, song, and tips to help develop your young child's rhyming skills.

Topic: Phonological Awareness

Just Read, Florida!

Print this activity sheet (on thicker stock paper if you have it). Cut apart the alphabet cards to create a deck of cards for playing letter and sounds games with your Kindergartner through second grader.

Topic: Phonics

Resources for Older Children

Parents and caregivers play an important role in supporting children’s literacy development, especially when children are having difficulty. Explore these ideas and resources from the tutorial to learn how.

Big Ideas

  • Reading with your child helps your child learn new words and ideas, understand the purposes for reading, hear what reading sounds like, develop thinking and problem-solving skills, and enjoy reading and learning.
  • Ask questions that are about ideas or words from the book, can be answered with more than one or two words, and need information from the story to answer.
  • Learning how speech can be broken into parts lays the foundation for breaking smaller sound parts in speech.
  • Correctly linking sounds to letters to sound out words helps your child read new words, recognize familiar words, and understand what is being read.
  • Fluency is the ability to read words, phrases, sentences, and stories correctly, with enough speed and expression. Reading aloud frequently helps your child develop reading fluency.

Visit these Resources to Learn More

Just Read, Florida!

This one-pager suggests questions you can ask a child before, during, and after reading nonfiction books.

Topic: Comprehension

Just Read, Florida!

Read this short document for questions you can ask a child before, during, and after reading fiction books.

Topic: Comprehension

Just Read, Florida!

This one-pager describes paired family readings and provides a ten-step read aloud planning sequence to use with children in Kindergarten through second grade.

Topic: Fluency with Text

Just Read, Florida!

Check out this document for some real-world reading tasks your child can do using everyday materials.

Topic: Fluency with Text, Comprehension

Read Aloud 15 Minutes

This infographic explains the PEER sequence and CROWD prompts to make reading interactive.

Topic: Beginning Reading, Comprehension

Resources for Adolescents

Parents and caregivers play an important role in supporting children’s literacy development, especially when children are having difficulty. Explore these ideas and resources from the tutorial to learn how.

Big Ideas

  • Reading with your child helps your child build background knowledge of topics, discuss ideas and issues, see a model of what good reading sounds like and learn words and how language works.
  • When engaging in conversations with your child, talk about school, friends, or current events. Ask questions about what your child is reading, listen to his answers, and discuss information read together.
  • A literacy-rich environment is a place that encourages reading and writing, such as listening to stories, reading together, and talking about ideas. To offer a literacy-rich environment, you can have a variety of reading material at home.
  • You can model reading and writing behaviors by reading and writing yourself and reading and writing together. Show your child how reading and writing is related to other activities.
  • You can be a media mentor for your child by showing and telling what you are doing online and why. Help your child to be an educated consumer of information on the internet.
  • You can motivate your child to read by following your child’s lead. Talk with her about her lack of interest in reading, listen and acknowledge your child’s reasons, talk about how reading can be enjoyable, and continue to provide an environment that encourages your child to read.

Visit these Resources to Learn More

Just Read, Florida!

Need tips to help your child learn good conversational skills? Check out this activity!

Topic: Language Development, Comprehension

Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk

This flyer for parents provides five research-based strategies and examples for supporting adolescents' writing development.

Topic: Writing

Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk

This flyer for parents provides five research-based strategies and examples for supporting adolescents' writing development.

Topic: Writing

The Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk

Read an informational sheet that describes how families can plan for and implement partner reading with their Middle Schooler.

Topic: Comprehension

Facilitator's Guide

Facilitator's Guide

The purpose of the facilitator guide is to provide information and materials to effectively facilitate the Supporting Your Child’s Literacy Development at Home Tutorial in-person as a workshop series and enable participants to achieve the learning objectives.